This morning I’m cooking a stir fry of veggies on the stove for the HMR Weight Management potluck at lunch today. The leaves on the trees outside my kitchen window are a lush green and I think the sun might come out today. The smell of soy sauce and garlic permeates the air.
“Wow, you’re actually cooking this early in the morning!” my daughter Megan says and we laugh. Yeah, it is kind of weird, especially considering I’ve got to be at work in about 30 minutes or so.
On Sunday, I’d gathered with my whole family at Jeremy’s house to celebrate Stevie’s 29th birthday, my big boy. He and his girlfriend had just returned from Thailand, so I brought a copy of my creative thesis with me to give to Stevie to read. I’m still not sure whether to give Melissa a copy or not because every time I read anything from it, she shouts, “Oh no, that’s not the way I remember it happened!”
“Mom’s just embellishing and making the story happen the way she sees it!” Jeremy argues.
“But I think it would be better if things happened the way they REALLY happened.”
“But how do you know you remember the way things really happened?” Jeremy asked. He’d been drinking a little and was still upset that the Sharks had lost badly – and were now out of it for the year. A pall and silence had fallen upon the room after much animated shouting among Jeremy and Stevie and their long-time friend Jamie. Jeremy immediately changed the channel, walked into his bedroom and changed out of his Sharks Jersey. He was still stinging from that – I’m not a huge sports fanatic, but I wanted the Sharks to win for my boys’ sake.
My friend Debby had arrived at Jeremy’s house before I did because I’d invited her – I wanted her to meet my family. After a while, Jen, Jeremy’s girlfriend, picked Melissa up from the train station and her friend Denise, and then Alisha came over with her daughter Alana, who is six now. As everyone shouted and laughed and talked, I relished in the chaos and disorder that is my life. Liezl, Stevie’s wonderful girlfriend, was chopping veggies up in the kitchen because she loves to cook – and baking a cake for Stevie’s birthday. The older kids drank a few shots – and eventually I did read from my thesis, the same pieces I’d read at my special reading that two of my four kids had missed.
I read it for Stevie and Melissa and for Alisha, Jen and Liezl and Denise – starting with 1986 when we were in Germany – Melissa shouting, “Mom, are you sure it really happened that way?” No one else seemed to care.
“But, Mom, I don’t know about that part where Chandel stole money from all of us – and Stevie confronted her – remember that?”
Funny because I’d forgotten that was even in my thesis even though I’d read it through how many times?